Monday, June 29th, 2015 at 5:43pm. 21 Views, 0 Comments.
>> Market UpdateQUOTE OF THE WEEK... "Well done is better than well said."--Benjamin Franklin, American Founding Father, author, printer, politician, postmaster, scientist, inventor, and diplomat
INFO THAT HITS US WHERE WE LIVE... Last month, real estate professionals clearly did well. Existing Home Sales went up 5.1% in May, hitting a better than expected 5.35 million annual rate. Even more important, sales are up 9.2% over a year ago, confirming that the trend is solidly positive.The May gain came pretty much all from single-family homes, although condos and coops were also up for the month. The median price of an existing home is now 7.9% over where it was a year ago. It was particularly nice to see sales increase in all major regions of the…
Friday, June 26th, 2015 at 8:02pm. 28 Views, 0 Comments.
COMMENTARY: Commerce Dept. reports dominated the early part of the week with much-ado about nothing. One report showed consumer spending down, another showed economic growth was up so in the end, mortgage investors yawned. It is definitely worth noting that most market watchers believe the Fed's telescope is focused squarely on inflation which registered a very benign gain of 0.1% for the third month in the last four. The "so what" factor here is straightforward -- rising incomes and accelerating spending are not a threat to mortgage interest rates as long as inflation stays in check.
Having said all of this, in the short term, the situation in Europe remains the hottest topic. If the Euro bankers come to a quick resolution to the Greek debt…
Monday, June 22nd, 2015 at 8:11pm. 42 Views, 0 Comments.
>> Market UpdateQUOTE OF THE WEEK... "I find the great thing in this world is not so much where we stand, as in what direction we are moving."--Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr., American physician, professor, and writer
INFO THAT HITS US WHERE WE LIVE... Housing Starts in May did not stand in a very comfortable place, down 11.1% from April. But let's take the advice of the famed Boston Brahmin and consider the direction--up 5.1% from a year ago. Single-family starts are up even more--6.8% in the past year. For more input on direction, we look to the 12-month moving average, and that's at its highest level since August 2008. More rational minds, not easy to find these days, also pointed out that May's dip in housing starts followed April's
Monday, June 15th, 2015 at 8:23pm. 55 Views, 0 Comments.
>> Market UpdateQUOTE OF THE WEEK... "The future ain't what it used to be."--Lawrence Peter "Yogi" Berra, retired American Major League Baseball player, manager, and coach
INFO THAT HITS US WHERE WE LIVE... The beloved catcher and aphorist could well be commenting on the housing market. Its future may not be booming like it once was, but it does look better. Fannie Mae's May 2015 National Housing Survey reports the share of people who say now is a good time to sell hit a survey high of 49%, six points higher than the same time last year. Also, the share of consumers whose household income is significantly higher than a year ago grew 6% in two months, to 28%. With these two indicators, Fannie's chief economist said, "Things are looking up for
Saturday, June 13th, 2015 at 5:52am. 77 Views, 0 Comments.
COMMENTARY: Many industry analysts are talking about increasing illiquidity in the bond market in general - and in the mortgage-backed securities market specifically and this seems to be the impetus for the recent increase in mortgage rates.
In a nutshell, many of the investors that buy MBS such as banks, insurance companies, mutual funds, foreign sovereign governments, and like-kind institutions are now regulated in what they can invest in which has reduced the available investment capital these value investors have access to. During the years when the Fed’s Quantitative Easing (QE) programs were purchasing MBS, demand was very robust and as we all know from our Econ 101 class - when demand exceeds supply, prices rise and in the world of mortgage…
Monday, June 8th, 2015 at 4:54pm. 56 Views, 0 Comments.
>> Market UpdateQUOTE OF THE WEEK... "I believe in numbers and signs."--Vikram Chatwal, American hotelier and former actor
INFO THAT HITS US WHERE WE LIVE... We saw some numbers last week that were signs causing us to believe the housing market continues to improve. With the exceptionally cold and snowy winter weather finally over, construction spending rebounded smartly in April, gaining 2.2% for the month, and 4% when you include upward revisions to the prior month. Overall construction spending hit its highest annual pace in more than six years, as a 0.6% surge in residential building was supported by heightened commercial and public activity. Although down for the week, the Mortgage Bankers Association's unadjusted Purchase Index was 14% higher…
Saturday, June 6th, 2015 at 3:44pm. 54 Views, 0 Comments.
COMMENTARY: Whereas last week was a yawner, the first 3 days of this week has been a head-scratcher with rates ratcheting up for no particularly strong reason. And then today was the cherry on the top with the Jobs report coming in at a very strong 280,000 jobs created in the month of May. Not bad for an economy that just posted back-to-back quarters of very anemic growth, sharp curtailments in exports and a noticeable decline in consumer demand. There was lots of scrambling in the mortgage-backed securities marketplace on Tues and Wednesday as profits were taken in a near hysterical sell-off. Perhaps someone knew about today’s Jobs Report? Hard to say…
After today's big jump, many analysts have revised their forecast for May retail sales to show…
Monday, June 1st, 2015 at 4:55pm. 53 Views, 0 Comments.
>> Market UpdateQUOTE OF THE WEEK... "The first and most important step toward success is the feeling that we can succeed."--Nelson Boswell, American author
INFO THAT HITS US WHERE WE LIVE... We certainly should have the feeling we'll succeed after last week's housing reports. April Pending Home Sales rose for the fourth month in a row, to the highest level since 2006. This National Association of Realtors (NAR) index of signed contracts on existing homes was up 3.4% for the month, and 14.0% over a year ago, its eighth month in a row of annual increases. Realtor.com's chief economist said, "All this bodes well for continued momentum into May and June." The NAR's chief economist added, "Homeowners looking to sell this spring appear to be in
Friday, May 29th, 2015 at 7:50pm. 54 Views, 0 Comments.
COMMENTARY: The past week in most respects was a yawner. Durable goods orders were down slightly and Unemployment was up slightly but both events were anticipated by rate-makers as rates remained unchanged. It is at least worth noting -- the economic recovery which began in 2008 is now entering its seventh year with growth running at its slowest pace since the end of World War Two. The slow start to 2015 suggests it will be difficult for the economy to reach a 3.0% growth rate before the year is over (the nation's historical average growth rate up until 2005 has been 3.3%). The "so-what" factor here is this -- as long as annualized economic growth as measured by GDP remains at a sub-3.0% pace - the likelihood of mortgage interest rates moving…
Tuesday, May 26th, 2015 at 9:54pm. 57 Views, 0 Comments.
>> Market UpdateQUOTE OF THE WEEK... "You can't bat a thousand all the time."--Julie Andrews, English actress, singer, author, director and dancer
INFO THAT HITS US WHERE WE LIVE... The housing market didn't bat a thousand last week, as Housing Starts and Building Permits both hit home runs, but Existing Home Sales struck out. The home runs came Wednesday as Housing Starts shot UP 20.2% in April to a very encouraging 1.135 million annual rate, 9.2% ahead of the pace a year ago. The single-family homes part of the market was no slouch, UP 16.7% for the month and 14.7% for the year. Builders are optimistic, as Building Permits went UP 10.1% for the month, to a 1.143 million annual rate. The National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) reported